The Pakistani helicopter that flew over Indian airspace along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district on Sunday was carrying top officials from the Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir region, reported The Indian Express. The Indian side had fired at the helicopter in warning.
According to norms that the two countries adhere to, helicopters are barred from coming within one kilometre of the Line of Control and fixed wing aircraft are not allowed to come within 10 km. The helicopter flew 700 metres into Indian territory over the Krishna Ghati sector before returning to Pakistani airspace, according to Jammu-based Army Public Relations Officer Lieutenant Colonel Devender Anand. He added that the airspace violation occurred around 12.10 pm.
The so-called Tourism Minister of Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir, Mushtaq Minhas, said he was on board the helicopter at the time along with “Prime Minister” Raja Farooq Haider Khan, his personal security officer and “Education Minister” Ifthikar Gilani, The Indian Express reported.
“We had no idea that we had breached (the airspace agreement), nor did we know that we were being fired at,” Minhas said. “When we landed at our destination, we learnt that there was firing on our chopper from the Indian side.”
“The Indian Army fired to show that Pakistan had violated their airspace,” Khan’s office said, according to Reuters. “When the firing took place, we were within our own airspace.” Khan added that his helicopter was not armed in any way, and called for peace. “We do not want any war hysteria in this region.”